With the Senate approval of the Expanded Maternity Leave Act of 2017 (also known as Senate Bill 1305), some mothers and would-be mothers have felt excited about the idea of enjoying longer time away from the workplace to take care of their babies and to recover from childbirth.
It should, however, be noted that the bill hasn’t been approved by the President and so it is not yet officially implemented. It is, so far, still waiting for approval and will only be in place once it is assigned with a Republic Act number and after 15 days once it gets publicized in the Official Gazette.
So what can we expect in the Extended Maternity Leave once it gets implemented? Let us consider the following points.
First and foremost, the Extended Maternity Leave covers all female workers in government and private sectors, regardless if the birth is by caesarean operation or normal delivery.
Married mothers will be granted 120 days maternity leave with pay along with an option to get a 30-day extension without pay. Single mothers, on the other hand, will be granted up to 150 days maternity leave with pay.
Female employees who experience miscarriage will also be granted the same benefit.
Fathers, on the other hand, will be allowed 30 days of paternity leave.
In addition to the mandatory maternity leave, the law tells us that employers are obligated to give the full payment of the leave no later than 30 days after the maternity leave application has been filed.
Female employees who file for maternity leave can expect to receive not lower than 2/3 of their regular monthly salaries. They should also be able to enjoy the benefits without any fear of being demoted or terminated from work.
Employers who fail to abide by this law will face a penalty of Php 20,000.00 and imprisonment of up to 12 years.